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Old July 16th, 2005, 01:44 PM   #1
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Scanning stills for montage - copyright issues

There is another thread going on regarding best hardware for scanning of still images for photo montages and it got me to thinking. Most wedding and commerical photographers retain the negatives and all copyright on their photos in anticipation of future revenue from additional sales In many cases their contracts with the couple specifically preclude any reproduction of the resulting photos by other than the photographer's studio and often proofs are made on ephemeral papers so they will fade in short order to prevent exactly what we're talking about doing - copying the print rather than purchasing copies from the photographer. Has anyone ever run into a situation where they have scanned such images (or other work taken by a professional photographer in the couple's posession such as graduation photos, First Communion, etc) to incorporate them into a video and later had the original photographer come against them for breach of copyright? Conversly has anyone approached the still photographer for permission to use their images in the wedding video and if so, what sort of reaction did you receive?
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Old July 16th, 2005, 09:29 PM   #2
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i dont use photographers images whatsoever, however here in aus a ruling has set a precedent for photographers being that the ownership of the copyrights to the "images" came to the client, however, ownership of the originals came to the photographer, who later on, can refuse sale of these negatives...

its a tricky one. But one thing to remember is that the images used do in fact belong to the client. The photos being taken DO belong to the client as it is of their likeness, and as ur not doing anything to the originals, thers really nothing that can be done by the photogrpaher to claim compensation. I dont know about laws in ur area, but i can see the logic there..

If people want to copy something bad enough, they will do it..
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Old July 17th, 2005, 08:55 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Jefferson
i dont use photographers images whatsoever, however here in aus a ruling has set a precedent for photographers being that the ownership of the copyrights to the "images" came to the client, however, ownership of the originals came to the photographer, who later on, can refuse sale of these negatives...
...But one thing to remember is that the images used do in fact belong to the client. The photos being taken DO belong to the client as it is of their likeness, and as ur not doing anything to the originals, thers really nothing that can be done by the photogrpaher to claim compensation. I dont know about laws in ur area, but i can see the logic there..
As I undertand the law here, there is a distinction made between one's likeness and the image of one's likeness. While the physical object that carries the image belongs to the client and certainly also does the right to allow or disallow any use of their physical likeness for commercial purposes, the ownership of the intellectual property of the image itself remains with the photographer unless he has explicitly relinquished the rights in writing. I can't go purchase an Ansel Adams original print, even if it's a photo including my likeness, duplicate it, and distribute the copies even though I indisputably own the physical object of the print itself.
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Old July 17th, 2005, 10:27 AM   #4
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I always make a point to ask the photographer permission to scan some of the proofs to use for DVD & Menu art. I've yet to have a problem yet- usually they are flattered and appreciative you took the time to ask permission.
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Old July 17th, 2005, 11:21 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glen Elliott
I always make a point to ask the photographer permission to scan some of the proofs to use for DVD & Menu art. I've yet to have a problem yet- usually they are flattered and appreciative you took the time to ask permission.
I haven't encountered this type of situation yet, but I agree with Glen. Wouldn't you want to know if they were giving pieces of their wedding video for someone else to profit off of?

Plus is free advertising, they might be impressed you actually asked for permission to use their photo, and referr clients to you.
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Old July 17th, 2005, 12:37 PM   #6
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I agree - sure seems like a good idea to me to ask - professional courtesy and all that if nothing else. Was just curious what people's experiences might have been.
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Old July 17th, 2005, 03:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Hendrickson
I haven't encountered this type of situation yet, but I agree with Glen. Wouldn't you want to know if they were giving pieces of their wedding video for someone else to profit off of?

Plus is free advertising, they might be impressed you actually asked for permission to use their photo, and referr clients to you.
After I ask permission I not only put a credit of the photographer on the rear cover of the DVD I'll also send or stop by the studio to give the photographer a copy. They are usually impressed to see their photography work composited in DVD art graphics. They'll sometimes even display the DVD in their lobby. It's mutually benefical.
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